Bliss Beyond All Duality

Second Question



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The second question

Question 2


EVERYBODY CAN SUFFER WHO HAS A NAVEL. And if you don't have a navel, still you will suffer -- you will find some other excuse. You may become afraid to touch your own ears.

Remember, the excuse is not the real problem; the problem is somewhere deep down. Why is the person afraid of touching his own navel? To touch the navel seems so innocent an activity, just as touching any part of the body is. The problem is somewhere else; this is only a symptom.

The navel is connected with the two vital centers of your life -- the most vital. One is sex, the other is death. And these two are the only fears in the world. The navel is not the question, but the navel is very close to the sex center. If you have repressed your sexuality then your navel becomes very sensitive -- because sexuality repressed starts gathering behind the navel. Hence the fear. The fear is basically that of sex, not of the navel.

When you repress your sex energy, where is it going to go? It will start accumulating, it will start overspreading the sex center. And the closest center to the sex is the navel. It will start touching the boundaries of the navel.

And because the navel has been your life-connection with your mother... your mother's life used to flow into you through the navel, so the navel is a hollow bamboo, a very very efficient vehicle of energy. It used to take your mother's energy into your life; for nine months in the mother's womb you lived through the navel. It was the navel that was the passage; energy HAS flowed through it, it is like a tunnel.

The tunnel is not empty. If your repress your sex, the sex energy will fill the tunnel -- and that is the fear. Somebody touching your navel will make you afraid, because he can immediately make you aware of your sexuality.

A repressed person's navel becomes one of the most erogenous zones. It is not naturally an erogenous zone, but it happens only if natural sex has been repressed too much. Then the empty tunnel, which has always been capable of carrying much energy, starts carrying sexuality. Hence the fear.

And the second possibility is: just behind the navel is the death center. That's why in Japanese, suicide is called HARA KIRI -- HARA means navel. The Japanese have known it down the ages, that there is a subtle point behind the navel -- if the arrow or the dagger reaches to that point, one dies immediately, and with no pain, almost no pain, with no torture. To die from anywhere else is more torturous because death is closest to the navel, it is just behind the navel. And it has to be so because sex is life: life and death are two aspects of the same coin.

The navel contains two possibilities: life and death. If you repress life, your navel becomes a very very erogenous zone -- and that will create fear in a repressive person, in a repressive psychology. Or, behind the navel is your death. If you have become too much obsessed with death, if you are too much afraid of death... and that too happens to people who are repressed. The person who is living his life naturally is not afraid of death, not at all -- in fact death will come to him, not as an end of life but as the climax of life. Death will come, not as the enemy of life but as the crescendo of the music of life.

The man who has lived his life totally, intensely, passionately, without any fear -- without any fear that has been created in you by the priests for centuries and centuries -- if a person lives his life without any fear, authentically, spontaneously, death will not create any fear in him, not at all. In fact, death will come as a great rest. Death will come as the ultimate flowering of life. He will be able to enjoy death too, he will be able to celebrate death too.

And remember, that is the criterion. If a person can enjoy and celebrate his death, that shows he has lived rightly; there is no other criterion. Your death will prove how you have lived. The fruit proves the tree -- and death is the ultimate fruit of the tree that you are. How have you lived? Joyously? Has your life been a song and a dance? Has your life been a benediction, a blessing? Have you been grateful to God for giving you life? Then death will come as the ultimate gift -- from the same hands, from the same totality. And you will feel tremendously ecstatic. You will receive death, you will welcome death, you will embrace death. Death will be your ultimate love.

But the person who has been repressing life, who has been repressing his sexuality, who has been repressing everything, who has never lived in any true way, will not be able to accept death either. How can he? He has not even lived yet. The tree has not even sprouted -- how can it bear fruit? He is not ripe for death, hence the fear. The fear is that I have not lived yet and death is coming closer every day, every moment."

The repressive person is afraid of sex, and the repressive person is afraid of death. And both are deeply related with the navel. But even if your navel is removed -- mm? -- it can be done by plastic surgery -- that will not change the problem at all. It may shift somewhere else; it will find some other outlet.

So remember, the problem has to be looked into deeply. Never be deceived by the symptom.

For years a guy goes to the pub each day, orders a beer and two pickled onions which he sticks in his ears. The bartender finally decides to get to the core of the matter, and upon the usual request says, "There are no onions but carrots are available."

The customer says, "Okay, let's have the carrots then," and shoves them in his ears. The bartender, not able to withhold any more, asks, "Why do you put the carrots in your ears?"

Whereupon the customer answers, "Because you don't have pickled onions."

Look deep into the problem; never be deceived by appearances. Otherwise you will go on asking questions, and there are foolish people in abundance in the world who will go on answering your question. And those answers will not help you -- they may even create more problems. The problem has to be looked into in its nudity, utter nudity.

So let me repeat: everybody has a navel, and everybody has fears, because everybody has been taught -- Hindu, Christian, Mohammedan, Jaina, Buddhist... all over the world, the whole past of humanity has been a repressive past, it has been an ugly phenomenon.

And it is good that the past is on its deathbed. I don't mourn, I rejoice that the past is dying -- because with the death of the past, a new man can arrive on the earth. A new man who will be able to rejoice, who will not be afraid to live. A new man who will not think of the other world and who will not create paradises in his imagination. All paradises are pornographic.

A person becomes interested in pornography only if he cannot find real people to love. If you cannot find the woman, if you cannot find the man, you become pornographic. Your imagination starts substituting for reality. So I tell you: all heavens and all paradises are pornographic. They have come out of a mind which has not lived, which has not known the beauties of this earth. Now there is only one hope: that after death you will be rewarded.

The fear is there. The first fear is of sex, because sex means birth, sex means life. And the second fear is of death, because death means the end. And the story is short between the beginning and the end -- so short really. One third of your life will be wasted in sleep; the second third will be wasted in your offices, shops, factories, and the remaining third in quarrelling, fighting, courts, nagging each other, torturing each other, and doing utterly stupid things.

How many days have you there really to live? Just watch your twenty-four hours: how many minutes, or how many seconds really do you have there to live, to celebrate? Where is the time? So you go on postponing: "Tomorrow I will live." And tomorrow comes only death! And you have not lived yet, and the opportunity is slipping out of your hands. Great fear arises.

This fear can express itself in a thousand and one ways. Somebody is afraid of touching his own navel, somebody is afraid of looking at his own body. Somebody is afraid of falling in love, somebody is afraid of not eating enough and goes on stuffing himself. Somebody else is afraid that if he has no power in the world, how is he going to protect himself? Somebody is afraid that if he does not have enough money in the world, how is he going to survive? And so on and so forth -- just watch people and you will find ALL kinds of fears dominating their lives.

Sherlock Holmes arrived in heaven. The angels turned out en masse to meet him; the Lord himself descended from his throne to bid him welcome. "Holmes," he said, "we have a little mystery up here that you may be able to help us solve. Adam and Eve seem to have disappeared; nobody has been able to locate them for aeons. If you could possibly uncover them for us..."

Holmes darted to the fringe of the assemblage and hauled two frightened and surprised angels before the Lord. "Here they are," he said.

Adam and Eve admitted their identities. "We got tired of being stared at and asked for autographs by every darned new angel who came up here," they explained. "We assumed aliases and these simple disguises and got away with them for centuries until this smarty-pants ferreted us out."

"How did you do it?" marvelled the Lord.

"Elementary, my dear God," said Holmes. "They were the only two who had no navels."

But still they were afraid, they were hiding. They had no navels -- how could they have? God created them out of mud and then breathed life into them. They were not born, they had not lived in the mother's womb for nine months -- how could they have navels? But still they were afraid, hiding out of fear.

Navels or no navels, you have to look into your frightened heart. Why are you so much afraid? Who has done this poisoning to you? The priests and the politicians have frightened you. They live out of your fear. They have exploited you because they were able to frighten you.

THE FIRST BASIC THING to make a man afraid is to tell him what is wrong and to never do the wrong; and make the wrong something which is so natural that he will be tempted to do it. Now he is caught. Tell him that some natural thing is so absolutely a sin that if he commits it he will be thrown in hell. Out of the fear of hell, he will start denying something natural to himself. And in that very denial, hell is created: he becomes frightened. He is afraid of himself, he cannot trust himself. He knows that if he simply relaxes for a day, he is going to commit the same thing that he has been told NOT to do.

If he does it he feels guilty: again he is in the trap. If he is not doing it he feels miserable, because he is denying something natural which was a need in his being, for his well-being.

The priests and the politicians who have been dominating humanity have been in a deep conspiracy: make man afraid. Tell him that something in his nature is wrong, evil. Divide him into two -- good and bad, saint and sinner. And once you divide a person you can rule him. Divide and rule: that has been the secret up to now. And man is divided, man is split.

You have been told so many things are wrong in you that you feel condemned. And still those things cannot be dropped just by thinking that they are wrong. At the most you can repress them -- but repressing them you become more and more ugly; repressing them you become more and more unworthy. You come to a self-condemnation, you start thinking that you are the worst sinner in the world. And it has been told so many times that you will suffer in hell that consciously you may not think of hell, but it is there in your very roots. And you have been told that you will be rewarded in heaven if you follow the priests and the politicians.

These are the basic tricks for training animals. This is the whole of Skinnerian psychology. If you want somebody's behaviour to be modified and changed, these are the two tricks: whatsoever you want him to do, whenever he does it reward him; and whenever he does not do it, punish him. That's how rats are being trained, and that's how elephants are being trained in the circus -- and that's what they have been doing with men.

The priests and the politicians have insulted humanity so greatly that it is simply a wonder how we go on tolerating these people still. Their greatest insult has been this, that they have treated men as rats.

Don't be angry at the psychologists who experiment with rats, and through those experiments derive conclusions about human beings. Don't be angry at them -- this has been the practice for thousands of years before the psychologist ever appeared on the scene; he is a very new arrival. But man's psychology has always been dominated by a kind of materialistic strategy, a behaviouristic strategy: make man afraid of hell. "Eat this -- if you don't eat this you will never go to heaven. Don't eat this -- if you eat it you will go to hell." And about small things...

Do you know? In the Buddhist scriptures there are thirty-three thousand rules for a monk. Thirty-three thousand rules! -- even to remember them is impossible. Thirty-three thousand rules have to be followed to live. Just a small life and thirty-three thousand rules. You are bound to feel guilty. You will be found lacking in many rules; you will not be able to follow all of them -- and then hell is certain.

And just think of hell. Your so-called saints have been very very imaginative about hell and heaven. They have created all kinds of tortures in hell. In fact, Adolf Hitler must have learnt from religious scriptures how to torture people. Adolf Hitler did not do anything new. He simply implemented what your saints have been saying about hell -- he created actual hell on the earth.

And think of your paradise: all kinds of pleasures. The same pleasures that your priests condemn you for enjoying here on the earth are available there. Here alcohol is sin, and in paradise, in FIRDAUS, it is the reward for the saints. And you need not go to a pub -- rivers of alcohol flow in heaven. Rivers! You need not drink, you can just swim. You can be drowned.

Here, to look at a beautiful woman is a sin, to be attracted to a beautiful woman is sin. And what are your saints doing in heaven? Enjoying beautiful women. Of course, in heaven those beautiful women have far more beauty than any woman can have on the earth. They are eternally young; they are stuck at the age of eighteen. You will not find any old woman in heaven -- I have not found. I have looked in all the scriptures: I have not yet found a single reference to an old woman. All are eighteen years, and centuries and centuries have passed but they remain stuck at eighteen years.

And they have golden bodies, they don't perspire. They don't need deodorants in heaven or perfume or cosmetics; there is no need. They have bodies of gold, their eyes are diamonds, they are eternally beautiful -- and they are available. But they are available only to the saints, mind you. If you are a sinner.... And who is a sinner? One who loved a woman on the earth is a sinner. And one who renounced all love, tortured himself in every way -- went to the Himalayas, slept on a bed of nails -- that is a saint.

I have heard about a great saint who died. And after one day his chief disciple also died -- the chief disciple could not live without the master. The disciple was very much exhilarated because he was being taken to heaven and he was thinking, "My master must be swimming in the rivers of alcohol, wine, and the most beautiful woman must have been given to him -- because he was such a great ascetic."

And it was really so! When he reached, under a golden tree, leaves of gold and flowers of diamonds and emeralds, the master was sitting there naked, as he used to live on the earth, and a very beautiful woman, a very improved edition of Marilyn Monroe, was hugging him.

The disciple simply fell at the feet of the master and he said, "My Lord, I knew it! that you would be rewarded. And why not? You have suffered so much in the world: you never touched a woman, you never looked at a woman, you never loved a woman. You escaped to the caves. But all that austerity is paid well -- now, for eternity, on and on...."

The master looked at the disciple and said. "You stupid. stop! You don't understand what is happening. This woman is not a reward for me: I am a punishment for her."

Your heavens and your hells are just imaginations of repressed people. But you have been taught in such a way, you have been brought up with such a stupid education, called 'religious education', that you live always in an inner conflict.

This inner conflict creates fear and greed in you, and then your fear and greed has to find some outlet. From where it finds it is irrelevant; if you stop one outlet it will come from another outlet. So rather than stopping outlets, please understand the root cause of it.

If you remain divided in yourself, if you remain split, if you can't accept yourself as you are, if you remain dominated by the priests and the politicians, you will remain afraid, trembling. They want you to remain in trembling, because only a person who is in deep trembling can be dominated, can be possessed, can be reduced to a thing, to a commodity.

The person who is in fear is ready to become a slave to anybody. The moment you drop all your fears... and they can be dropped because they have been artificially created. They have been imposed upon you, they are not part of your nature, so they can easily be shaken off. The moment you shake off all your fears, for the first time you will start existing as a single unit. You will be unitary, you will become an individual.

Remember the meaning of the word 'individual': one who is indivisible. That is the root meaning of the word 'individual'. You are not yet individuals. You will have to go into a kind of individuation. And the way to it means dropping all the false divisions that have been imposed upon you. Once you are an individual, all fears disappear.

AND I AM NOT SAYING that the disappearance of fear means that the bus driver will go on honking the horn and you will go on walking in the middle of the road. That is stupidity, not fearlessness. I don't mean by the disappearance of fear that a snake will pass just in front of you and you will not care -- that is stupidity again. There are fears which are intelligent. You have to jump out of the way of the snake -- that is intelligent; that fear is not a problem. That fear is helpful; it protects you, it is your friend.

But fears like the fear of touching your own navel, the fear of being in love, the fear of being alone, the fear of sitting silently unoccupied, or the fear of the crowd, or the fear of sitting in a small cell, or the fear of travelling in an aeroplane, or the fear of remaining in a constant paranoia that you are being persecuted, that the whole world is against you -- all these fears will disappear. Abnormal fears will disappear; normal fears are perfectly okay.

I have heard:

Mr O'Hara indulged in a few drinks at the neighbourhood bar. "I'm not afraid of anything," he boasted.

"Oh, yeah," sang one of the inebriated customers.

"Oh, yeah! I have been through the hurricanes of Florida, the tornadoes of the Midwest the floods of the Mississipi, and the earthquakes of Los Angeles, and none of them scared me. Furthermore," he continued, after another sip from his drink, "I fought in World War II, the Korean war, and Vietnam, and nothing frightens me."

"O'Hara," wailed another drinking pal. "I just saw your wife coming down the street."

"Oh, no!" moaned O'Hara as he dropped to his knees and began to pray.

You may not be afraid of going into war, you may not be afraid of fighting with a tiger, but you are afraid of your own wife, you are afraid of your own husband, you are afraid of your own children, you are afraid of your own parents. This is pathological. But this is how we are living. All our relationships are based in fear. The husband thinks unless he makes the wife afraid he is not a real man. And the wife also thinks that unless she makes the husband afraid of her she is no more in power. It is all power politics!

And naturally the man is a loser, because the man has to fight in the marketplace -- so many competitors, so much competition, each is at the other's throat -- and by the time he comes home he is tired from the whole day's battle. And the wife is fresh. The whole day she has really been waiting for the husband to come home. Now the husband is not in a position to fight. He is already tired, exhausted. He wants to rest and relax because tomorrow again the same fight has to begin in the marketplace. And the wife has been waiting the whole day -- her anger accumulating, her frustration accumulating, no outlet. She jumps upon the husband. Any slight excuse and the fight breaks out. The husband HAS to compromise.

And then the ways of the woman are very subtle. She will cry, she will weep, she may not cook the food, or she may put too much salt in it -- her ways are very very subtle. Now, after the whole day's conflict the husband does not want any more conflict; he is ready to say yes to anything. That's why almost every husband becomes a hen-pecked husband. It is very rare to find a husband who is not hen-pecked. That is the normal situation.

The police car turned the corner to discover a dishevelled little man crawling on the sidewalk. He was bleeding and his clothes were torn and he was almost in shock.

"Help me, officer," he pleaded.

The officer jumped out of the patrol car. "What happened?"

"I was beaten. She took all my money, my car too."


"That Amazon."

"You mean a woman did this to you?"

"Yes! "

"Can you give a description of this woman?"

The little man's dazed eyes looked up at the officer. "She is five feet ten and a half inches tall, weighs two hundred pounds, has blonde hair with a grey streak down the back, wears size ten shoes, and has a mole on her right shoulder."

"That's remarkable that you can give such an accurate description, down to her shoe size! How were you able to do it?"

The little man bowed his head. "She is my wife."

In the past, children used to be afraid of the parents. Now the wheel has turned full circle -- now parents are afraid of the children. In the past, the students used to be afraid of the teachers and the professors; now the thing has changed -- now the teachers and the professors are afraid of the students. But fear continues this way or that.

A man who understands himself, integrates himself, becomes an individual, w ill he free of fear. And not only will he be free of fear, he will not make anybody else afraid either.

That's why I say your saints are only so-called saints. They are not yet free of fear -- because they still go on making you afraid. The real man who is beyond fear is also beyond making other people afraid -- because to make anybody afraid is to poison his system. It is very inhuman.

I cannot make you afraid of anything. I cannot tell you that if you do a small thing you are going to hell. And I cannot make you greedy either -- because greed and fear are together. I cannot say to you that if you become sannyasins you wi!! go to heaven. All that I can say is: if you are an integrated individual you ARE in heaven. It is not a question of the future.


There are no heavens and no hells, only two kinds of psychology. One psychology: that of the individual, integrated person. The other psychology: that of the split, schizophrenic person.


Next: Chapter 9, Bliss Beyond All Duality, Third Question


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